Cognex Joins OSARO Partners Alliance to Integrate Vision Into Warehouse Robots

The combination of OSARO's SightWorks software and Cognex's DataMan scanners helped Zenni achieve over 99% fulfillment accuracy.


The OSARO Robotic Bagging System at Zenni Optical includes Cognex DataMan scanners.
Cognex provided DataMan barcode scanners to be integrated with OSARO's Robotic Bagging System and SightWorks software to increase fulfillment throughput by 80% at Zenni Optical.

Cognex Corp. yesterday joined the OSARO Partners Alliance, which is intended to provide optimzed automation to e-commerce customers. The integration of the Cognex DataMan fix-mount, image-based barcode scanners into the OSARO Robotic Bagging System helped Zenni Optical Inc. solve a difficult technical challenge, according to OSARO Inc.

“At OSARO, we’re always looking for the best technologies and vendors to incorporate into our strategic partnership ecosystem,” said Gemma Ross, vice president of operations at OSARO, in a release.

“Cognex is now part of that partnership strategy to deploy the best possible solutions to our customers,” she stated. “We are excited to be working with Cognex and to draw on their experts with deep domain experience in the successful deployment of barcode readers in challenging e-commerce and logistics applications.”

OSARO said it provides robots using machine learning and vision control software to help companies respond to high SKU inventories, complex packaging, and fragile items. The San Francisco-based company offers Hypercare support, from concept exploration to installation on site. It added that its systems support goods-to-robot (G2R) use cases on the warehouse floor.

Cognex solves reading challenges

Founded in 1981, Cognex claimed that it is a leading global provider of machine vision hardware and software to manufacturers and distributors. The Natick, Mass.-based company said its products can automate the location, identification, inspection, and measurement of discrete items such as mobile phones, electric vehicle batteries, and e-commerce packages.

Cognex said it has shipped more than 4 million image-based products, representing over $10 billion in cumulative revenue. It has offices and distributors throughout the Americas, Europe, and Asia.

“Cognex is proud to partner with OSARO to solve the most difficult barcode-reading challenges on behalf of its customer, Zenni,” said Ben Carey, director of logistics product management at Cognex. “Our DataMan barcode-reading solutions can read barcodes in challenging conditions, ensuring that customers can maintain an efficient and accurate robotic pick-and-place process—and deliver customer orders on time.”

Zenni gets a better look through cases

Zenni Optical’s signature translucent blue eyeglass cases had stymied scanners from several OEMs that were unable to read barcodes through the plastic cases. OSARO vetted several suppliers before choosing Cognex's DataMan readers, which were part of a system that it said provided a “compelling” return on investment (ROI).

“OSARO worked side by side with us to ensure knowledge transfer,” recalled Blyn Prokopowich, shipping supervisor at Zenni Optical. “They actively responded to all our questions and requests.”

“I've seen my team change and they are very, very excited about this challenge,” she said. “Learning new skills is good instead of doing repetitive motions every day. The skills give them confidence.”

Lighting plays an important role in barcode reading and can help increase read rates, noted the companies. Cognex’s high-intensity LED lighting — a high-powered integrated torch (HPIT)—was instrumental in the ability to read barcodes through Zenni’s eyewear cases.

Today, each OSARO robotic system can pick, scan, bag, and label up to 410 eyeglasses per hour. Cognex's DataMan readers achieved 99% accuracy and read rates, while increasing throughput by 80%, said the company.

OSARO's system also includes FANUC M-10 Series robot arm powered by the OSARO SightWorks vision and control system, a Pregis Sharp automated bagging machine, and Framos cameras to guide the robot. NPSG Global built the physical infrastructure for Novato, Calif.-based Zenni in collaboration with OSARO's technical team.

Zenni Optical cases

OSARO's Robotic Bagging system can pick and place Zenni Optical cases. Source: OSARO

OSARO Partners Alliance addresses an urgent need

The OSARO Partners Alliance offers “one-stop access” for businesses looking to deploy fulfillment robots. The company said its program is designed to optimize every stage of a customer’s purchasing and deployment processes.

The alliance enables partners such as autonomous mobile robot (AMR) and automated storage and retrieval system (ASRS) vendors, integrators, distributors, third-party logistics providers (3PLs), and consultants to collaborate and co-market unified solutions.

OSARO explained that its program convenes the best parties to deliver success to both customers and partners. “It fosters a community where participants can share knowledge, resources, and expertise to support their mutual clients as they evolve their supply chain capabilities to keep e-commerce humming,” it said.

The company said members of the alliance can use OSARO’s picking vision software to create new opportunities, build new revenue streams together, and expand the range of available systmes for fast-growing e-commerce and logistics businesses.

An OSARO-powered Fanuc robot arm picks and scans items. The Pregis MAX_PRO-18 bags, labels, and completes the order.

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The OSARO Robotic Bagging System at Zenni Optical includes Cognex DataMan scanners.

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